Town of Jackson: Responding to the pandemic

Prior to the coronavirus outbreak, Raftelis had been working with the Town of Jackson, WY on a comprehensive water rate and capacity study. Jackson is a picturesque ski town in Teton County near the gates of Yellowstone National Park.

We had already conducted three of the planned six meetings of the Citizen Review Committee – a group of around a dozen town stakeholders of varying skillsets, backgrounds, and interests who were informing the study.

After postponing the fourth meeting by a couple of weeks, Town staff and members of the CRC who had mainly been staying at home were eager to continue the process – if for nothing else than human interaction.

Raftelis proposed a solution to use GoToMeeting’s web conferencing platform. Anticipating some challenges with committee members’ level of technological familiarity, we hosted a drop-in session the day prior to the meeting. This session allowed committee members to experience GoToMeeting and work out the bugs with ample time to make adjustments before the next meeting.

The result was a success. The platform allowed information to be shared visually and committee members navigated the program deftly. After the meeting, one committee member commented on how well the process worked and how she enjoyed the ability to make comments using the chat feature without interrupting the flow of the information being presented. From a facilitator’s perspective, it is great to have a tool like private messaging, which we use frequently to try to draw quieter members of the committee into the conversation. Finally, the ability to save a video recording of the meeting was something typically not done during in-person sessions but was a welcome tool to make sure all comments – stated verbally or via the chat feature – were collected for integration into the process.

To learn more, see how we helped the Town of Nantucket and a Texas utility with their public engagement, view our insight on re-imaging engagement, or explore how Raftelis can help you with public engagement.